Housing value statistics released yesterday showed that for the first time, the value of homes dropped in every one of the U.S. metropolitan districts surveyed. According to the Case Schiller Index (Play with numbers here), home sales prices dropped another 2.2% in April.
The silver lining is that’s the lowest rate of decline since last December. The gray cloud is that’s 17 months of decline out of the last 18, and a 20% decline in that time. The sale prices are now what they were in April 2003.
You can probably guess what the absolute worst housing market in the country is right now (hint: It rhymes with Detroit).
Everything is somehow connected in the economy and what the mortgage crisis started, perhaps the energy — is it too early to call it a crisis? — “thing” puts asunder.
The New York Times today has an interesting story about life on the distant suburbs.
Across the nation, the realization is taking hold that rising energy prices are less a momentary blip than a change with lasting consequences. The shift to costlier fuel is threatening to slow the decades-old migration away from cities, while exacerbating the housing downturn by diminishing the appeal of larger homes set far from urban jobs.
In Atlanta, Philadelphia, San Francisco and Minneapolis, homes beyond the urban core have been falling in value faster than those within, according to an analysis by Moody’s Economy.com.
This is the part where my city slicker friends begin snickering. The average gasoline bill on the outer fringes of metropolitan areas is close to $4,000.
Is this the end of urban sprawl? What if it is? How would it affect city (or at least closer-in) metro area living?